Hawks Cay Resort in Duck Key, FL, is excited to announce that upgrades are underway. Construction recently began on new dock pilings and a new dockside store. The facility improvements should have minimal impact on its boaters. Recently added to the Hawks Cay experience is the Better Than Most SCUBA program. Divers of all levels can enjoy two tank reef scuba trips in the Florida Keys.
Suntex Marinas Expands to the Florida Panhandle
This past fall, premier marina owner and operator, Suntex Marinas, announced its latest acquisition of Legendary Marina in Destin, FL. The spacious property along the panhandle is one of the largest dry storage facilities in the United States with more than 180,000 square feet, accommodating up to 780 vessels. Amenities include in-and-out water services, fuel, ships store and more. Enjoy the close proximity to Destin’s 24 miles of gorgeous beaches.
Oasis Marinas Welcomes More New Properties
The mid-Atlantic-based marina management company continues to grow, coining its eighth property in Florida, Four Fish Marina in Jensen Beach. Located on the Indian River, the marina offers 30 slips accommodating vessels up to 90 feet. Amenities include dry storage, a fuel dock, and lovely cottages and accommodations at Four Fish Inn & Marina. Recent additions to the Oasis family also include Cape Charles Yacht Center in Cape Charles, VA, and Port Conneaut Marina in Conneaut, OH.
Upcoming Boat Shows
St. Petersburg Power & Sailboat Show St. Petersburg, FL January 19-22, 2023
Seattle Boat Show Seattle, WA February 3-11, 2023
Miami International Boat Show Miami, FL February 15-19, 2023
Palm Beach International Boat Show West Palm Beach, FL March 23-26, 2023
Marinalife, a company that delivers tools and resources to fully allow the boating community to embrace life on the water, has partnered with SpeedyDock.
With digital communication taking the lead, the new generation of boaters are looking for the same convenient ways to communicate with marinas. SpeedyDock, developed in 2016, is software for dry-stack marinas and boat clubs that helps simplify marina operations. The mobile app allows boaters to request scheduled launches and request fuel, drinks, ship store items, and other services offered at their marina.
SpeedyDock keeps track of the requested actions and makes the information available in real-time. Marina employees can work with customers and also keep other employees up to date on request statuses. SpeedyDock’s software is now integrated with Marinalife Manager, allowing their marinas to engage with their customers even more efficiently.
Marinalife Manager is the latest product of Marinalife, Inc., and enables marina managers and owners to streamline their operations. With marina management software, marinas can seamlessly connect with their boaters, manage internal operations, get real-time analytics, and more.
“Having SpeedyDock partner with Marinalife helps achieve our goal of connecting and empowering boaters and marinas,” says Jen Leroux, CEO Marinalife. “Reservations through SpeedyDock are now not just convenient for the boater, but also for marinas using Marinalife Manager.”
Marinalife Managers’s integration with SpeedyDock keeps customers, boats, inventory, and more, in sync. Customer Accounts and inventory are reflected in both SpeedyDock and Marinalife Manager’s system, keeping the marina staff up-to-date.
"When I created SpeedyDock, I was mindful of the boater's experience. I also saw an opportunity for marinas to simplify their customer relationship management," says Travis Wolfe, Founder of SpeedyDock.
About Marinalife: Founded by lifelong boaters, Marinalife delivers tools and resources that encourage the boating community to embrace life on the water. Marinalife joined with Snag-A-Slip in 2017 to create tech-enabled solutions that allow boaters and marinas to connect and transact easily. Headquartered in Baltimore, MD, our crew is passionate about boating and delivering exceptional service to our customers.
About SpeedyDock: Founded in 2016, SpeedyDock provides a cutting-edge software solution for drystack marina launch scheduling and boat club reservation scheduling. Our team in Ruskin, FL is committed to delivering exceptional service to boaters and marinas.
MARINALIFE ANNOUNCES THE WINNERS OF THE 13TH ANNUAL BEST MARINA CONTEST
(BALTIMORE, MD, November 4, 2022)Marinalife is pleased to announce the winners of its 13th Annual Best Marina Contest. Hundreds of boaters, marinas and members of the maritime industry in North America and the Caribbean cast their votes, and the results are as follows:
BEST LARGE MARINA
First Place: Brunswick Landing Marina – Brunswick, GA Second Place: Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina – Hilton Head, SC Third Place: Spring Point Marina – South Portland, ME
BEST SMALL MARINA
First Place: Chicks Marina – Kennebunkport, ME Second Place: Champlin’s Marina & Resort – Block Island, RI Third Place: Jekyll Harbor Marina – Jekyll Island, GA
Winning first place in the Large Marina Category, Brunswick Landing Marina boasts state-of-the-art facilities and a top-notch, friendly marina staff. Located in historic downtown Brunswick, the property is ideal for all seasons, as it’s constructed in former U.S. Navy Hurricane Hole and protected by land on three sides. The spacious marina boasts 445+ dry and wet slips and marine services by highly skilled technicians. The boatyard offers year-round service including repairs, detailing, bottom paint, custom woodworking and more. Over the years, the marina has evolved into a party hub for cruisers with daily social activities plus free wine and beer three-times-a week, as well as complimentary propane grills on every dock.
“We are ecstatic and very grateful that Brunswick Landing Marina was selected as Best Large Marina in the country. With so many great marinas being recognized, the award truly validates that our decisions and hard work are leading us in a positive direction,” said Vibert Burin, dock manager.
Marina Manager Michael Torres adds that the property is looking forward to future upgrades such as doubling the size of the dock office/ship store and adding 540’ of leasable dock space.
“We are working on a new project that will include a mooring ball field with an anticipated 30 moorings. Running parallel to those projects is a much larger endeavor that is going to reshape our entire business, which will be called Brunswick Landing. Brunswick Landing is proposed to be a 26-acre mixed-use, town center-style development that will include a hotel, condominiums, townhomes, restaurants and retail space,” said Torres.
Chicks Marina in Kennebunkport, ME, returns as the reigning first place champ in the 2022 Best Small Marina award. The 50-slip marina is tucked away in the idyllic southern coast of New England. Voted among the region’s cleanest marinas, the staff continuously upgrades facilities to ensure efficiency. The marina offers custom boat care services, 30/50/100 amp electrical, heated winter storage and 91 Octane gasoline and ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel.
“We are thrilled to win Best Small Marina for the third year in a row. It is such an honor when customers recognize your hard work and love Chicks Marina as much as we do,” said Amy Gaynor, operations manager of Chicks Marina. “Chicks Marina is a very well-maintained marina. It is central to downtown, restaurants and the coastline. Our staff is top notch and goes above and beyond to make your stay enjoyable,” Gaynor added.
Marinalife recognizes second and third place winners in each category. Best Large Marina finalists are Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina inHilton Head Island, SC, (second place) and Spring Point Marina in South Portland, ME, (third place). Champlin’s Marina & Resort in Block Island, RI, took second place in the Best Small Marina Category, and Jekyll Harbor Marina in Jekyll Island, GA, came in third.
As we celebrate more than 20years of Marinalife, we send a special thanks to all the marinas and boaters nationwide for participating in this year’s contest. Keep an eye out for announcements starting in Summer 2023 for Marinalife’s 14th Annual Best Marina Contest.
Marinalife magazine, a quarterly travel and lifestyle publication, provides boaters with entertaining and useful articles about destinations, marinas, cruising stories, captain’s tips and more. For information, visit marinalife.com, call 410-752-0505 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
‘Tis the season to cruise south for the winter! Follow the lead of migrating whales you might be lucky enough to spot, and experience all the Caribbean has to offer on and off the water. Carnival is in full swing all winter in almost every nation in the Caribbean. We highlighted a few, each with its own local cultural spin. You’ll find something for everyone below, from music festivals and foodie events to regattas and horse races.
Whale Watching in Turks and Caicos
Turks and Caicos
As humpback whales migrate to their winter breeding ground in the Dominican Republic, the waters of Turks and Caicos are the perfect place to catch a glimpse. Join a whale watching tour, where you cruise to the Columbus Passage for the best views.
Aruba Carnival kicks off in November, but most events and parades happen in the winter. Travel to Oranjestad for the opening torch parade on January 7 and the lighting parade on February 11, dubbed “Aruba’s favorite evening carnival parade.” Enjoy extravagant costumes, electrifying jump-ups and children’s parades, all culminating in the Burning of King Momo at the end of the season.
Where to Dock: Veradero Arbua Marina & Boatyard
Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
The highlights of Trinidad and Tobago’s Carnival lead up to Ash Wednesday. Carnival Monday opens with J’ouvert in the wee hours, and for the next two days, masqueraders dance through the streets in vibrant costumes and body paint to the sounds of calypso. Nodding to their French Creole roots, performers and attendees celebrate Mardi Gras on Carnival Tuesday.
The southern Caribbean island of Curaçao offers an opportunity to experience Carnival starting in the new year. Visitors can expect music festivals with local tumba music and calypso, as well as several parades. Two popular ones are the “Gran Marcha” Parade and Grand Farewell Carnival Parade. While you’re there, explore the island’s secluded beaches, national parks and historical art and architecture.
The Cayman Cookout is back for the first time since 2020! Come see the world’s most talented chefs and wine and spirits experts at the Grand Cayman Ritz-Carlton for a week of curated culinary events. Foodies relish in top-notch global cuisine, explorers join events across the island, and beverage enthusiasts are in for a treat as the cookout expands its mixology offerings this year.
Puerto Rico’s largest festival consumes the streets of Old San Juan with live music, dancing and parades. People wearing huge papier-mâché heads of folk characters are the stars of the show. Look forward to local artisans each day and lively concerts and parties every night.
For almost three decades, this family-friendly music festival has brought reggae lovers together to experience the tunes of local and international roots reggae artists. From dusk ‘til dawn, artists perform while food vendors serve local flavors and artisans display indigenous jewelry and craft items in an arts village. Adult attendees are welcome to partake in and learn about cannabis from renowned experts in the “Herb Curb.”
Pineapple Cup, Montego Bay Race
Montego Bay, Jamaica
One of the oldest offshore races on the calendar, this course takes competitors from Miami to Cuba through the Northwest Providence Channel, then down a sleigh ride toward the finish line at Montego Bay. Competitors enjoy free dockage and other perks at the Montego Bay Yacht Club, and spectators can join celebratory events.
Where to Dock: Montego Bay Yacht Club
Bequia Music Festival
Bequia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Dock at the second largest island in the Grenadines, known as a mecca to the Caribbean cruising yacht community, for an unforgettable mash-up of musicians. Most artists come from elsewhere in the Caribbean, making for an intimate festival with diverse tunes. When you’re not grooving, explore the lush green hills and white sand beaches of Bequia.
Chaired by a Grenadian and created by sailing enthusiasts who didn’t want the keelboat regatta to end, this week of racing welcomes contestants from 20+ countries. The first race kicks off at Grenada’s sister island Carriacou and ends in Grenada, and the second set takes place in Grenada. Spectators can look forward to performances from talented local bands and plenty of local Mount Gay Rum from Grenada.
Where to Dock: Prickly Bay Marin or Port Louis Marina
Caribbean Multihull Challenge
Hosted by the Sint Maarten Yacht Club, this race takes contestants through Anguilla and French St. Martin and ends in Dutch St. Maarten. Contestants sail catamarans and tri-hulls — new and classic — through this scenic route. Everyone else enjoys events at the club or joins the non-competitive Cruising Multihull Rally. Participants cruise to Anguilla for beach games, fine dining and a beach bar on Day 1, and Anse Marcel for more dining and partying on Day 2.
Where to Dock: Sint Maarten Yacht Club (private) or Palapa Marina (transient)
Valentine’s Day Jump Up
Christiansted, St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands
Boaters cruising the Caribbean won’t want to miss the Valentine’s Day rendition of this Carnival-esque celebration. Steel drummers and other musicians, local food vendors, and artisans fill the Christiansted streets and boardwalk in the evening. The most iconic part is when Moko Jumbies, a Virgin Islands tradition said to ward off evil, dance in the streets in their eccentric costumes.
Cruise to the British Virgin Islands to celebrate maritime treasures, underwater wrecks and art reefs. Divers get to explore the wrecks with local operators, but events galore are held for landlubbers. Locals share tales of Blackbeard’s time in BVI, and the local boat-building history (Tortola Sloops was created here), alongside welcome and farewell parties on the beach.
Celebrate Dominican Republic’s independence from Haiti in 1844 in this picturesque beach town on Samaná Bay. Parades and parties run along the Malecón promenade and its businesses. Nature lovers are fascinated by the local Whale Museum and views of humpback whales, who come to the Bay for mating seasons. Those seeking relaxation should cruise to Cayo Levantado, a tiny island with gorgeous beaches.
Make your way to Garrison Savannah, the home of horse racing in Barbados, for one of the most prestigious events in the Eastern Caribbean equestrian scene. Top local, regional and international jockeys race on a 1,800 meter turf course. And no trip to Barbados is complete without a rum factory tour at the Mount Gay Vistors Centre!
Superyacht Challenge Antigua
Antigua & Barbuda
Boaters have a blast watching a small, exclusive fleet of spectacular superyachts race 12-30 mile courses along the stunning south coast of Antigua for five days. Only 12-15 yachts in excess of 80 feet are expected to enter and enjoy the amenities at Nelson’s Dockyard. Owners, guests and crew enjoy exploring the fleet and partaking in laid back social events. superyachtchallengeantigua.com
Avid concert goers won’t want to miss the oldest independent music festival in the Caribbean under the stars! Bankie Banx, the reggae artist known as “Anguillan Bob Dylan,” owns the Dune Preserve venue and has performed at the festival himself. Other big names such as John Mayer, Nas, Toots and the Maytals, and Inner Circle have been in previous lineups.
Corales Puntacana Championship
Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
At this PGA Tour event, golf aficionados can see 120 players compete to earn points for the Fed Ex Cup. The Puntacana Resort & Club, host of the event, boasts an exclusive 18-hole course with natural cliffs and majestic carolina quarries. While here, book a resort on the Coconut Coast, lay out on Punta Cana’s pristine white beaches, or go zip-lining, windsurfing, or sailing.
Round out your winter in the Caribbean with the “Crown Jewel of Caribbean Racing.” Join the shoreside fun with happy hours, dinners and live music at the St. Thomas Yacht Club every night of the race. History buffs should check out Blackbeard’s Castle and Fort Christian, and all visitors should dip into St. Thomas’s popular snorkeling spots.